Monday, 25 August 2014

Johnny Carson on Democracy

Johnny Carson on Democracy 

"Majority rule government is purchasing an enormous house you can't manage the cost of with cash you don't need to awe individuals you wish were dead. What's more, not at all like socialism, vote based system does not mean hosting only one inadequate political gathering; it means hosting two ineffectual political gatherings. ... Vote based system is inviting individuals from different terrains, and providing for them something to clutch - generally a mop or a leaf blower. It implies that with fitting timing and conscientious accounting, anybody can kick the bucket owing the legislature a gigantic measure of cash. ... Vote based system means free TV, not great TV, however free. ... Lastly, popular government is the hawk on the once more of a dollar bank note, with 13 bolts in one hook, 13 leaves on an extension, 13 tail plumes, and 13 stars over its head - this means that when the white man resulted in these present circumstances nation, it was bad fortunes for the Indians, bad fortunes for the trees, bad fortunes for the untamed life, and lights out for the American falcon. I bless your heart." 

For his Second Inaugural location, George Washington kept it short: 

"Individual Citizens: 

I am again called upon by the voice of my nation to execute the capacities of its Chief Magistrate. At the point when the event fitting for it might arrive, I should try to express the high sense I divert of this recognized honor, and of the certainty which has been rested in me by the populace of united America. 

Past to the execution of any official demonstration of the President the Constitution requires a promise of office. This promise I am currently going to take, and in your vicinity: That on the off chance that it should be found amid my organization of the Government I have in any occurrence disregarded readily or purposely the directives thereof, I may (other than bringing about sacred discipline) be liable to the upbraidings of all who are presently witnesses of the present grave service."

Monday, 25 February 2013

Don Woods

Don Woods (c. 1927 – June 12, 2012) was an American meteorologist and cartoonist. He was the first television weatherman in Oklahoma to hold a degree in meteorology. He started his Oklahoma career in 1954 on Tulsa's ABC affiliate television station, KTUL. He used a cartoon character called Gusty during his weather forecasts every night, drawing on-air, with a reference to recent weather as the focus of his simple line-drawn character. Woods used Gusty to demonstrate how to be weather smart during thunderstorm and tornado activity. At various times, Gusty would also be drawn swimming, fishing, water skiing, or playing American football.

Gusty was a responsible individual — raking leaves in the fall, mowing the grass in the summer, or sometimes just relaxing with a good book. Every night during the weather forecast, Woods would announce a winner for that night's original Gusty. The Gusty drawings became one of the longest promotions for KTUL, lasting from the mid-1950s until Woods's retirement in 1989. 

Gusty drawings are installed in Tulsa's Gilcrease Museum and the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C. Woods's work was part of a 2010 exhibition on Oklahoma cartoonists at the Oklahoma History Center. Woods has received numerous local, state, and national awards and recognitions. Perhaps as a testament to his love of weather, Don Woods taught at Tulsa Community College for a time. And as for a sign of recognition for his influence on those that watched his weather reports, and Woods' live drawings of Gusty, a special honor came to him in April 2005, when Gusty was named Oklahoma's state cartoon.

Monday, 30 July 2012


Wood is a hard, fibrous tissue found in many trees. It has been used for hundreds of thousands of years for both fuel and as a construction material. It is an organic material, a natural composite of cellulose fibers (which are strong in tension) embedded in a matrix of lignin which resists compression. Wood is sometimes defined as only the secondary xylem in the stems of trees, or it is defined more broadly to include the same type of tissue elsewhere such as in tree roots or in other plants such as shrubs. In a living tree it performs a support function, enabling woody plants to grow large or to stand up for themselves. It also mediates the transfer of water and nutrients to the leaves and other growing tissues. Wood may also refer to other plant materials with comparable properties, and to material engineered from wood, or wood chips or fiber.

The earth contains about one trillion tonnes of wood, which grows at a rate of 10 billion tonnes per year. As an abundant, carbon-neutral renewable resource, woody materials have been of intense interest as a source of renewable energy. In 1991, approximately 3.5 billion cubic meters of wood were harvested. Dominant uses were for furniture and building construction.

Saturday, 11 September 2004

A tragedy of errors and stubbornness.

Dec 12-13, 1862. Waves upon waves of Union soldiers facing a firing squad of Lee's troops. Burnside couldn't stop himself from perpetuating the slaughter. The Angel of Fredericksburg helped the dying, risking death himself. Then, a rare display of Northern Lights cast their magic over the fallen troops. The only maneuver that worked for the Federals was their retreat. 6,000 dead in a day. And every night I sleep in this house from which Confederate sharpshooters tried to stop their tragic advance. If only they had stopped the Feds, or the Feds had stopped themselves....

The Daily Howler

Let’s repeat what we’ve told you for years. If we couldn’t observe such inane conversations, it would be hard to believe they were humanly possible. When you were an idealistic kid in high school, had it ever so much as crossed your mind that humans engaged in conversations like this? Had it ever crossed your mind that adult humans could be half this stupid?

Monday, 6 September 2004

The Pope's Alarm Clock

Pope Paul VI was presented with an alarm clock in 1923. It served him faithfully for 55 years, waking him promptly at 6 o?ck every morning. On Sunday 6th August 1978, the alarm clock rang, apparently of its own accord; at 9:40 p.m.-it was the very moment that the Pope died.